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BAE looks beyond military market with LiteHUD technology

BAE Systems is looking at further sales opportunities for its LiteHUD head-up display, having flown the system on the Lockheed Martin AC-130J, Textron AirLand Scorpion and its own Advanced Hawk demonstrator (below) within recent months. "It is expected to fly on at least two other aircraft this year," the company says.

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BAE Systems

Already ordered for five different platforms, the LiteHUD uses optical waveguide technology, which BAE says results in a system that is 50% lighter and 60% smaller by volume than a conventional lens-and-mirror head-up display.

In addition to its selection for US Special Operations Command AC-130J gunships and the light-attack-roled Scorpion, the equipment is also in low-rate initial production for Turkish Aerospace Industries' Hurkus B basic trainer. BAE – which has also been selected by another two undisclosed customers, respectively for a basic trainer and fighter – is already manufacturing additional systems, in anticipation of further buys.

LiteHUD can be acquired as an off-the-shelf, plug-in solution, or adapted to meet specific customer requirements. For example, the Hurkus B version has a wider field of view display, a HUD repeater for its instructor and an updated control panel, which will help to prepare students ahead of eventually flying the Turkish air force's Lockheed F-16s.

Andy Humphries, director of head-up displays for BAE's Electronics Systems unit, says the company is now looking at other potential applications for the product, including on small commercial aircraft and business jets.

"The feedback is very positive," he says of the flight-testing performed to date, adding: "Hopefully, by the end of the year, we will have a few other deals."

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